Choose Native Plants In The Right Size For Your Garden

Wondering what size plant to buy at one of our native plant sales?

We stock a variety of plant sizes: four inch, one gallon, two gallon, three gallon, five gallon, and even some ten gallon plants. These sizes refer to the size of the pot the plant is growing in, not the overall size of the plant. Expect trees, shrubs, grasses, and vines to be quite tall!

Plants in large pots are more mature plants with more developed root systems. They are also more expensive than smaller, less mature plants. How can you budget so you get the most out of every plant?

Buy plants in four-inch pots for container gardens and annuals for seasonal color. Groundcovers like wedelia or pigeonberry do well in this size, as do plants that spread very quickly like frog fruit. Herbs and vegetables grow quickly and are good to buy in the four inch size.

You'll want to buy a larger plant size for shrubs, trees and native grasses, especially if you're planning to use these plants in your front yard where it’s more desirable to have a mature-looking landscape.

I recommend buying your shrubs in at least the three gallon size and native grasses in the one gallon or three gallon size. Buy other perennials like pink skullcap, lantana, or penstemon in the one gallon size. Everything will be large enough to fill your garden beds without waiting.

Smaller trees are often easier to work with and actually grow healthier than trees planted when they're too used to being in a container. We sell trees in five gallon and ten gallon sizes because those are mature enough to have an immediate effect and root well in your garden without needing specialized equipment to dig the hole for planting.

Remember that you have to dig a hole at least three times as wide as the size of the tree for it to have the best chance of taking root. I recommend the tree planning protocol published by Texas A&M University to get the best results with your new tree.